Exploring Delaware with Your Kids

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Here’s a fun day trip idea we stumbled onto a few weeks ago! I say stumbled because though I planned to go to the park and splash pad, the rest of the day was somewhat unplanned. Delaware is a 40-ish minute trip from downtown Columbus and has a super cute downtown area.

First of all, the park. As far as parks and playgrounds go, this one is awesome! I love that there is a playground (a REALLY nice one) so close to the splash pad. It’s the whole package in case your kids get tired of one or the other quickly. The playground area is covered in artificial turf – so no mud or mulch to deal with!

There is a dinosaur theme with large dinosaur prints in the sidewalk, a dinosaur slide and dinosaurs to run through at the splash pad.

There are some water tables on the edge of the playground – my kids really wanted something to play with inside them (which we didn’t have). So if your kids aren’t into being splashed, but still like to play in water, bring some plastic animals or cars to play with in the water!

Another nice thing about the splash pad is that there is a covered area for sitting. Throughout the park there were two large pavilions with picnic tables for shade and eating. There is also a snack shack.

If you followed me last summer, you might remember that my kids were not big fans of splash pads! 🙂 So I’ll tell you, I didn’t even pack swim suits – just an extra change of clothes! haha. Well, this year they proved to be a little bit braver than last so we needed those clothes! {See Five on Friday: Splash Pads here!}

After the Spray and Play, we headed downtown with no particular destination in mind.

We found a couple of bakeries and coffee shops and ended up choosing Fresh Start Cafe and Bakery. There were lots of yummy treats and Crimson Cup coffee. The boys chose cupcakes because they always do and I heard no complaints! 😉

  

We walked around downtown a bit and ended up at Fundamentals: Children’s Books, Toys and Games, which is a fun store for kids books and art and teacher supplies!

  

This summer, Fundamentals will be hosting a Where’s the Penguin hunt around downtown Delaware, based on the book Where’s the Penguin by Sophie Schrey! Beginning July 1, kids can search for the penguin at at least 20 participating businesses and prizes will be given away!  The Find the Penguin Grand Finale Party will take place at Fundamentals on August 4, 2017 from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM, during the First Friday events in downtown Delaware.

The store also hosts a story time that includes stories, music, dancing, and crafts at 10:30 AM! The next one is July 26th!

Another event they have coming up is the Summer Reading Road Trip on on Sunday, July 16th from 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM which includes giveaways, costume character, author signings, crafts and activities!

I’m looking forward to returning to downtown Delaware! Does anyone have a Delaware favorite to recommend?

Know Before You Go:

Spray and Play at Veterans Park
1121 S. Houk Rd, Delaware, OH 43015

Fresh Start Cafe and Bakery
24 North Sandusky Street
Delaware, Ohio, OH 43015
(740) 990-0388
Monday: Closed
Tuesday-Thursday 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Friday-Saturday 7:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Sunday 7:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Fundamentals: Children’s Books, Toys and Games
25 W Winter St
Delaware, Ohio, OH 43015
(740) 363-0290
Monday-Saturday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Sunday: Closed

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5 on Friday: Splash Pads

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Are you ready for summer fun? These 5 splash pads will help you and your kids keep your cool!

1. Hilliard’s Station Park

4021 Main St., Hilliard, OH 43026

Hilliard’s Station Park fountains cover a decent sized area and there are tables to sit at and lots of space on the cement steps. Hours are 8:00 AM – 10:00 PM and music plays during those hours! The parks hosts lots of fun events this summer like Food Truck Thursday, Yoga and Flicks on the Bricks (family friendly movie nights!). See the list of 2018 summer events at Hilliard’s Station Park here! After your visit get some coffee and play at Coffee Connections of Hilliard!

2. Ballantrae Community Park Spray Fountains

6350 Woerner Temple Rd., Dublin, OH 43016

Hours for this splash pad are 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM every day. There is a huge grassy area where you can have a blanket to sit on. There are also a few picnic tables. There is not a lot of shade, so be prepared for that! On top of the hill behind the fountains is the bunny sculpture you see below, so this splash pad is commonly referred to as the “bunny fountains”! If you climb up to the top (there is a path), you can look for all sorts of shapes and images in the sculpture!

3. Scioto Mile Fountain in Bicentennial Park

233 Civic Center Dr., Columbus, OH 43215

The Scioto Mile Fountain is a large fountain/splash pad area with lots of green space in the area! There are concrete steps to sit on here, too, and the views of downtown are the best! 🙂 Hours are Sunday through Thursday from 9:00 AM to 10:00 PM and Friday and Saturday from 9:00 AM to 11:00 PM. At night there is colorful lighting and fog effects! Lots of concerts and festivals take place on the Scioto Mile, check their calendar for upcoming events!

4. Powell Splash Pad

47 Hall St., Powell, OH 43065

The Powell Splash Pad is great because there is a playground adjacent so there is lots to do if your kids get tired of splashing! There is a large pavilion area with picnic tables and a few areas with shade where you can put down a blanket! The Splash Pad is open Memorial Day through Labor Day from 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM. Afterwards, head over to Espresso 22 or Rita’s for a treat!

5. Spray and Play at Veterans Park

1121 S. Houk Rd, Delaware, OH 43015

This is another great splash pad/playground combo! The splash pad offers a covered seating area and there are also two large pavilions with picnic tables for eating or finding shade! The playground is huge and it and the splash pad have a dinosaur theme! There is a snack shack on location for treats and beverages! The splash pad opened on Memorial Day and the hours on the city’s website state from “dawn to dusk”! Read a full post about this amazing park and splash pad here!

Before you head off to one of these splash pads, you might want to check out 25 Things to Pack for a Successful Trip to the Splash Pad! 😉

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12 Columbus Parks to Try This Summer

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These 12 Columbus Parks and Playgrounds will keep your kids from being bored this summer in Columbus!

1. Friendship Park, Gahanna

  • 150 Oklahoma Ave., Gahanna, OH 43230

This park has a play area for younger kids and older kids, and the Gahanna Story Trail, where a story is on display for reading as you follow a path through the woods. Restrooms are available on site.

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2. Carriage Place Park, Columbus

  • 4900 Sawmill Rd., Columbus, OH 43235

This park is part of the Carriage Place Community Recreation Center and has a play area for older kids and younger kids. There is also a path around the park for walking, jogging, etc. Restrooms are available inside the Rec Center.

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3. Fancyburg Park, Upper Arlington

  • 3375 Kioka Avenue, Upper Arlington, OH 43221

This park has play areas for all ages, including toddlers. There is a shelter house with restrooms close to the playground. This park is also shady, which is nice! This is the site of several festivals in Upper Arlington throughout the year!

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4. Planet Westerville Playground, Westerville

  • 362 Huber Village Blvd., Westerville, OH 43081

This playground is part of the larger Huber Village Park and has a lot of opportunity for climbing and sliding for all ages! This park is fenced in, which is really nice. There is a restroom nearby and a shelter with picnic tables.

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5. Whetstone Park, Clintonville

  • 3923 N. High St., Columbus, OH 43214

The park pictured here is not the park next to the Westerville Community Recreation Center, though there is a playground there as well! This play area is further into the park, past the Park of Roses. There is a super high slide here for your daredevils and a metal fire engine for climbing on. There are port-a-potties near the park, but to get to an indoor restroom you’ll need to go back to the Rec Center or Library which is close by, but not within walking distance. There are picnic tables here and a pond nearby.

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6. Wyman Woods, Grandview Heights

  • 1016 Grandview Ave., Grandview Heights, OH 43212

This park just opened a few years ago and offers a lot of space for rock climbing! This park isn’t the best for toddlers (it’s recommended for ages 5-12), but there are some toddler swings and a small tunnel slide. Seasonal restrooms are available at the shelter house and there are sand volleyball courts on site. Several picnic tables are also available. Another bonus here: free Wifi!

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7. Scioto Audubon, Columbus

  • 400 W. Whittier St., Columbus, OH 43215

This playground is part of the Scioto Audubon Metro Park. There is a play area for older and younger kids and a mister for really hot days! There are several picnic tables with umbrellas overhead. The closest restrooms are at the nature center, which is a bit of a walk from the playground. There is a rock climbing wall and an obstacle course nearby, not to mention the gorgeous views of downtown from the park!

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8. Rocky Fork Metro Park, Westerville

  • 7180 Walnut St, Westerville, OH 43081

This metro park opened in 2015 and the playground here is simple, but unique. It’s mainly a slide and a wooden bridge, but it was fun for my kids to run around on. There is also a rope climbing area. If you visit this park, make sure to check out the large shelter area nearby where there are big wooden chairs for sitting and watching for wildlife! Restrooms are right by the playground. See 6 Metro Park Playgrounds6 Central Ohio Metro Park Playgrounds for more!

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9. Henceroth Park, Grove City

  • 2075 Mallow Lane, Grove City, OH 43123

This park is a great park for younger kids, though there is a play structure for older kids as well. There is a train, boat, and jeep for climbing and driving. There’s also a butterfly garden and a wooded path for walking. No restrooms on site. (Someone please visit this one just to make it worth all the times I had to stop auto correct from making this Henceforth Park!) 😉

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10. Wickliffe Playground (Castle Park), Upper Arlington

  • 2405 Wickliffe Rd, Upper Arlington, Ohio 43221

Here’s a unique park to check out this summer! This park is the playground for Wickliffe Progressive School and is only available during non-school hours. This park made up of a large, wooden structure also known as the Castle Park, and my kids love running around in here! There are also swings and, on the other side of the school, another play area set up like a little town. Restrooms are not available.

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11. Blendon Woods, Westerville

  • 4265 E. Dublin-Granville Road Westerville, OH 43081

This playground at Blendon Woods Metro Park is on the west side of the park near the Natural Play Area. My kids loved the tunnels to climb through. While you’re at the park, be sure to check out the Nature Center, too! There are restrooms at several locations in the Metro Park. You can also read Exploring Blendon Woods Metro ParkExploring Blendon Woods Metro Park!

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12. Westgate Park, Columbus

  • 455 S. Westgate Ave. Columbus, OH 43204

This fun playground is part of the Westgate Community Recreation Center. There are two playgrounds here, a pond, two murals and a small shelter with picnic tables. Restrooms are available in the Rec Center.

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If that’s not enough for you, I’ve also got more parks listed in these posts: 6 Columbus Area Parks for Toddlers and Coffee + Park: 3 Parks Within Walking Distance of a Coffee Shop. Happy park hopping! 🙂

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